Monday, 20 May, 2019

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan arrives in Iran

Pakistan PM Imran Khan visits Iran amid tense relations Pakistan: Iran-Based Militants Behind Slaying of Security Personnel
Deanna Wagner | 22 April, 2019, 15:31

Qureshi said he telephoned Iranian Foreign Minister Jawad Zarif earlier in the day and received solid assurances from Zarif that Tehran is ready to fully cooperate with Islamabad to bring the militants to justice.

The letter further read: "The information about the hubs of these Baloch terrorist organisations in Iran, having training camps and logistics bases across the border, was shared with Iranian intelligence in the recent past, and on a number of occasions earlier".

PM Imran is on a two-day crucial trip to Tehran amid rising tensions between the two neighbours following the recent attack in Ormara in which some 25 unidentified militants stopped passenger buses travelling between Karachi and Gwadar, offloaded passengers after checking their identity cards and executed them.

Iran and Pakistan will form a joint quick reaction force to combat militant activity on their shared border, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said on Monday during a televised press conference with Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Groups operating both within Pakistan's and Iran's Balochistan provinces, which share a long border, seek independence from both countries. Pakistan's foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said the new separatist group had camps inside Iranian border areas.

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PM Khan recalled when he first came to Tehran during his student days and said he saw a big difference in the country, something that he wanted to see in Pakistan. Necessary measures to connect a gas pipeline to Pakistan have been taken and we are prepared to increase exported power to Pakistan 10 times what it is today, he announced.

He said Pakistan has suffered more than any country in war against terror, Pakistani security forces are fighting to endure peace and stability. The natural-resource rich Pakistani region also borders Afghanistan. He said the steps included establishment of new Southern Command and new Frontier Corps. "Besides fencing of the border, we will also synchronize border patrolling and exercises to better manage the border", he said.

It asserted that "after the incident, the terrorists who arrived from border region returned to that area".

In a letter written to the Iranian embassy on Friday, the foreign ministry stated, "Killing of 14 innocent Pakistanis by terrorist groups based in Iran is a very serious incident that Pakistan protests strongly". At one point Pakistan hosted four million refugees and today we have 2.7 million, he said, adding that Iran has hosted nearly three million.

We have discussed the way of cooperation, like trade improvement that will benefit both of us, said PM Khan, adding that Pakistan is particularly interested in how Iran, ever since the revolution, has improved its primary healthcare.